Our goal is to host a Global Neuroethics Conference that will educate the general populace on the current exponential growth within the fields of neuroscience and neurotechnology; while simultaneously elaborating on the need for new neuro-specific human rights. This will be a community funded event relying solely on donations, sponsorship contributions, and fundraising campaigns. Lectures will be provided by a number of very distinguished speakers who have dedicated their lives to the fields of neuroscience, neuroethics, and human rights. There will also be a segment during the conference which will allow the victims of human rights violations in the neurological field to give brief testimonials to the audience. A panel of legal experts, neuroscientists, technology developers, neuroethicists, and human rights advocates has been formed, and will continue accepting membership applications. This panel has created a rough draft of the Neuro-Specific Human Rights Bill, which will be distributed to all conference attendees. Discussion regarding the current state of the bill is highly encouraged as it will be presented to legislative assembly later in the year. All suggestions regarding any potential revisions to the bill will be acknowledged, reviewed, and deliberated by the panel. This conference will be covered by multiple media outlets, and representatives from all 4 major political parties will be invited.
The volume and variety of neurotechnology applications is rapidly increasing inside and outside the clinical and research setting. The ubiquitous distribution of cheaper, scalable and easy-to-use neuroapplications has the potential of opening unprecedented opportunities at the brain-machine interface level and making neurotechnology intricately embedded in our everyday life. While this technological trend may generate immense advantage for society in many ways, its implications for ethics and the law remain largely unexplored. We argue that in the light of the disruptive change that neurotechnology is determining in the digital ecosystem, the normative terrain should be urgently prepared to prevent misuse or unintended negative consequences. In addition, given the fundamental character of the neurocognitive dimension, we argue that such normative response should not exclusively focus on tort law but also on foundational issues at the level of human right law.
This proposal of neuro-specific human rights in response to emerging advancements in neurotechnology is consistent with and a logical continuation of the proposal of developing genetic-specific human rights in response to advancements in genetics and genomics as set out by the Universal Declaration on the Human Genome and Human Rights and the International Declaration on Human Genetic Data.
The freedom of thought, freedom from slavery, torture and inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment are regarded by international human rights law as not subject to any exceptions and, therefore, as absolute rights. Absolute rights cannot be limited for any reason. No circumstance justifies a qualification or limitation of absolute rights. Absolute rights cannot be suspended or restricted, even during a declared state of emergency. The right to cognitive liberty, the right to mental privacy, the right to mental integrity, and the right to psychological continuity should also be considered as absolute rights.